We have responsibility for the definitive rights of way network
within the borough, and we have a legal duty to protect the rights
of the public in the use and enjoyment of the public rights of way
in their area.
The network of rights of way are mapped and accompanied by a
statement that describes the routes. This is conclusive evidence
that the rights contained on that map exist. This definitive map is
continuously reviewed and we have an obligation to keep the
map and statements up to date.
Rochdale's rights of way network
With a total of 552 km, we have one of the largest rights of way
networks in Greater Manchester. 80% are footpaths for use by the
general public on foot, while 20% are bridleways and
restricted byways for use by non motorised vehicles, horse back,
cycles and on foot.
A permissive route is where a landowner gives
permission for use. We don't record these on the definitive
map and the landowner can refuse access over these routes at any
Obstructing a definitive route is an offence. The obstruction
could be a fence, wall or building across a route, the presence of
a vicious dog, bull or other animal, or overgrown vegetation.